The first Grand Tour of the 2021 season is here! This edition of the 2021 Giro, which starts this Saturday, promises to be thrilling. The route between Turin and Milan is not lacking in spice, with 21 stages offering a scenario full of twists and turns. Sprinters, climbers and riders will all have the opportunity to express their full potential.
ELIA VIVIANI, THE DESIRE TO GIVE EVERYTHING
The team will be led by Elia Viviani. The former European champion will be doing everything in his power to win the 80th race of his career, as he has been on the rise since the beginning of the season. He had three top 5 finishes at the UAE Tour and he finally raised his arms by winning the sprint in Cholet - Pays de la Loire. Despite a crash in Belgium that kept him away from the circuit, he was able to resume racing at the Tour de Romandie last week to fine-tune his preparation.
The sprinter already has five Giro victories to his palmares and he will do everything to add another one. In order to achieve this, Elia Viviani will be able to count on a 100% Italian team composed of Fabio Sabatini, Simone Consonni. And his brother, Attilio Viviani (24) will support them for his first Grand Tour in his career. The first sprint is expected on Sunday in Novara.
YOUTH AND EXPERIENCE
Cofidis also has confidence in its young talent. In addition to Attilio Viviani, French riders Victor Lafay (25) and Rémy Rochas (24), who have distinguished themselves in the Tour of Valencia by finishing respectively 1st and 2nd in the best young rider classification, will fight hard. After having participated in the Ardennes, they will head for the Giro. Victor will discover it after having participated in the Vuelta, whereas it will be Rémy's first big Tour.
The team will also be based around Nicolas Edet as soon as the road gets higher. If he was unlucky last year in the Giro, due to several crashes, the rider from Sarthois will do everything to show himself in the mountains. This is a playground he knows well and for good reason: Edet won the polka-dot jersey of best climber at the Vuelta in 2013 and at Paris-Nice last season. Finally, the team will be completed by Eritrean Natnael Berhane, who will be able to support both the sprinters and the climbers. The riders will regroup in Italy on Wednesday in order to be ready for the start of the 104th edition of the Giro on Saturday.
Elia VIVIANI : « The Tour de Romandie was the last stage before the Giro. I have always done the Tour de Romandie before doing good results at the Giro d'Italia. Psychologically, I did everything to be ready and to gain experience before this Giro. For an Italian it is the most important event of the season. My main objective, of course, is to win the stage. The stage that makes you dream is the one in Verona (the 13th stage, Friday 21st May) but I really hope to win before that. There won't be many opportunities for sprinters - maybe five or six - so we have to be ready from day one. The team is well balanced between sprinters and climbers. I am very happy to have Fabio, Simone and Attilio with me, who are riders I trust a lot. I can't wait for the start! »
Roberto DAMIANI, sport director : «We have a team that is built for sprinting around Elia Viviani. After a good start to the season, Elia has been working hard to get back to his best level after his crash in Belgium. During the Tour de Romandie, despite the difficulties and the chaotic weather, he has been able to prepare himself well and arrives at this Giro in good shape and with a lot of confidence. Elia will be able to count on Fabio Sabatini, Simone Consonni and Attilio Viviani. On the other hand, we wanted to trust the young riders, Victor Lafay and Rémy Rochas, who will be able to benefit from the experience of Nicolas Edet. And Natnael Berhane will be very precious to support his team-mates whatever the profile of each stage. »
Cédric VASSEUR, general manager : « We are approaching this edition of the Giro with the main objective of winning a stage. The team will give 100% for Elia Viviani in the sprints and will not restrict itself in any other way. Even if we are aware that we are not one of the big favourites, Elia will give everything and hopes to continue his success after having found victory again this year. We also expect a lot from our young riders, Victor Lafay, Rémy Rochas and Attilio Viviani, who will find the Giro a suitable terrain for them. The team has been composed in a homogeneous way with a harmonious mix of youth, freshness and experience. We also expect a lot from Nicolas Edet, Fabio Sabatini, Simone Consonni and Natnael Berhane who all have experience in these big events. »